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06-29-2015, 03:41 PM   #1
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Olympus EE-1 shoe-mounted red dot sight—your thoughts?

EE-1 Dot Sight | Olympus

Basically, this is a shoe-mounted red dot sight, based on the design used on the Olympus Stylus SP-100 superzoom compact. Although designed for use with the Olympus OM-D cameras and the Stylus 1, there is no communication with the camera body and the accessory may be used with any camera with a standard accessory shoe.

I did spend a bit of time with the SP-100 at B&H a while back and I find that it's pretty neat. Considering that the hot shoe is unused most of the time on my camera, this might be useful especially with my DA* 60-250.

What are your thoughts? Is it worth the $130 price? B&H has it in stock.

—DragonLord

06-29-2015, 03:56 PM   #2
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With the DA 60-250 you can zoom out and then zoom in. I doubt the red dot will help. Using a 400mm with a 1.4x TC I have gotten lost a few times but even then not too bad unless aiming at stars. On my 8" dobsonian telescope I can see using one but there I have a spotting scope and a red dot and a green laser as options.

I guess what I am getting at is with an optical viewfinder and a zoom I don't see the reason to buy one. With a very high magnification lens or no optical viewfinder it might be helpful for use in bright sunlight or quick target acquisition at the max zoom but I feel it's a gimmick in that scenario. Maybe the 250-600 zoom lens would benefit from it - but I don't have one myself.
06-29-2015, 04:24 PM   #3
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I agree, with a zoom lens, I don't really see a need for this red dot finder. Even with my prime 400 lens, I would see no benefit. It's also pretty pricey. There's been a thread or two on converting rifle red dot finders to cameras here, I seem to recall; and that would be much less expensive. May not look as nice though.
06-29-2015, 05:08 PM   #4
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Quick question....how does this red dot sight help with manual focusing on a 300 lens on say a Q? Do we use the red dot finder to aim at a bird and then use focus peaking to make sure the red dot is sharp...and then take the photo? Not sure the concept behind...apologies for the newbie question.

06-29-2015, 06:07 PM   #5
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The red dot is not projected on the target. It isn't a laser dot. It is projected inside the sight on the back of an element, much as the red aiming / focusing dots are projected on the focus screen by a dSLR. When the sight is properly calibrated (aligned) the lens is centered on the same point as the dot within the aiming device (the red dot sight).

Focusing is done by the camera independently of the sight - whether by OVF or using focus peaking on the LCD. I use one with my Q and K200/2.5. Many Qsers use one with the DA*300. They're best used on cameras with a tripod and gimbal head.
06-29-2015, 09:10 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
The red dot is not projected on the target. It isn't a laser dot. It is projected inside the sight on the back of an element, much as the red aiming / focusing dots are projected on the focus screen by a dSLR. When the sight is properly calibrated (aligned) the lens is centered on the same point as the dot within the aiming device (the red dot sight).

Focusing is done by the camera independently of the sight - whether by OVF or using focus peaking on the LCD. I use one with my Q and K200/2.5. Many Qsers use one with the DA*300. They're best used on cameras with a tripod and gimbal head.
I see....so the red dot is almost like a super powerful focusing beam similar to the one on the camera...except it is able to go long distance?
06-30-2015, 02:21 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by raider Quote
Quick question....how does this red dot sight help with manual focusing on a 300 lens on say a Q? Do we use the red dot finder to aim at a bird and then use focus peaking to make sure the red dot is sharp...and then take the photo? Not sure the concept behind...apologies for the newbie question.
Yes, this is what you would use the red dot scope for, and that is how you do it. Except the red dot is not on your picture or in the live view, it's in the sight. So, aim at bird, use focus peaking, take picture. It works good on the Q and long lens.
06-30-2015, 03:54 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by raider Quote
I see....so the red dot is almost like a super powerful focusing beam similar to the one on the camera...except it is able to go long distance?
I think you are picturing some kind of laser target you might see in a shoot-em-up movie on the chest of the bad guy, who then drops his weapon. There's no laser at all.

It is just a guide you use to aim the rifle or camera, like cross-hairs on a traditional rifle scope. The dot doesn't project outside the aiming device at all and it doesn't assist focusing. If the Red Dot Sight was attached to a rifle (for which it was designed) and properly sighted in you would have approximate aim to fire at your distant target, but there wouldn't be any dot ON THE TARGET ITSELF. It stays inside the device. Then you would use your accurate sighting device to actually fire. In much the same way, your Red Dot Sight will allow you to approximately AIM your camera, but composing and focusing remains purely a camera or manual function.

This device is most useful for a camera that only has an LCD and no viewfinder of any kind available to AIM the camera. It gives a much wider field of view than the telephoto lens, so you don't need to saw around 'looking' for your subject. Once approximately located you compose and focus with the LCD.

Go here to read and see.


Last edited by monochrome; 06-30-2015 at 03:59 AM.
06-30-2015, 04:51 AM   #9
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Other than to quickly acquire a target on extreme telephoto applications like with adapted Q lenses, the other reason for a red dot on a DSLR is to easily follow BIF and keep them in the focus area while letting the camera handle the AF.
06-30-2015, 05:51 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
I think you are picturing some kind of laser target you might see in a shoot-em-up movie on the chest of the bad guy, who then drops his weapon. There's no laser at all.

It is just a guide you use to aim the rifle or camera, like cross-hairs on a traditional rifle scope. The dot doesn't project outside the aiming device at all and it doesn't assist focusing. If the Red Dot Sight was attached to a rifle (for which it was designed) and properly sighted in you would have approximate aim to fire at your distant target, but there wouldn't be any dot ON THE TARGET ITSELF. It stays inside the device. Then you would use your accurate sighting device to actually fire. In much the same way, your Red Dot Sight will allow you to approximately AIM your camera, but composing and focusing remains purely a camera or manual function.

This device is most useful for a camera that only has an LCD and no viewfinder of any kind available to AIM the camera. It gives a much wider field of view than the telephoto lens, so you don't need to saw around 'looking' for your subject. Once approximately located you compose and focus with the LCD.

Go here to read and see.
Ahhh...ok. I understand now...the red dot is in the view finder of that Red Dot Sighting device.

but if you are shooting with a 300 lens, how does this help with shooting a small bird that is far away....wouldn't the target be so small even if there is a red dot?
06-30-2015, 06:06 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by raider Quote
Ahhh...ok. I understand now...the red dot is in the view finder of that Red Dot Sighting device.

but if you are shooting with a 300 lens, how does this help with shooting a small bird that is far away....wouldn't the target be so small even if there is a red dot?
Yes, it will be small. It's an aiming device, that's it. It helps you point your camera at what you want to see in the LCD screen.
06-30-2015, 07:36 AM   #12
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Think of it this way. If you are using a Q with a 300mm lens that's effectively over 1500mm in terms of what the field of view is. Pointing the lens at what you want becomes very hard. My 8" dobsonian telescope is a prime example. Finding a star in the sky despite pointing the tube at it can be hard - using a properly aligned red dot sight means placing the dot over the object you want to see and then you are pretty close - this is important when you are using 30-60x magnifications.

This acts like an unmagnified spotting scope. There is a tube, you see through it - it doesn't magnify the target. At the center is a red dot projected from inside the device onto glass inside the device which shows up as a glowing red dot. Put the dot over the target and your lens should be filled with whatever you are superimposing the dot on. This only works after adjusting it very precisely.
06-30-2015, 05:05 PM   #13
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Thanks guys. I understand now. I am kinda keen to try now with my Q-S1 and my DA300
07-03-2015, 05:12 PM   #14
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Has anyone used a regular, non camera specific red dot sight? I've got one for gun and telescope use, but trying to cobble it onto the camera (a K-50) I couldn't get enough adjustment range to deal with parallax issues. Is there a hot shoe adapter that would help with this? I've got a legacy 400mm prime and it would help a lot with aiming.
07-04-2015, 07:23 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Oakland Rob Quote
Has anyone used a regular, non camera specific red dot sight? I've got one for gun and telescope use, but trying to cobble it onto the camera (a K-50) I couldn't get enough adjustment range to deal with parallax issues. Is there a hot shoe adapter that would help with this? I've got a legacy 400mm prime and it would help a lot with aiming.
The telescope adapters are typically able to adjust quite a bit. If you put a dovetail adapter onto a hot shoe adapter it might work.
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